A first-time DUI is considered a Class B misdemeanor in Utah, punishable by a jail sentence of up to six months, a maximum $1,000 fine (not including court costs), and driver’s license suspension for up to 120 days. However, if your DUI arrest involves another person’s injury or death, you could face increased penalties and even a felony charge.
DUI Involving Injury
When it comes to DUI involving injury, the specific charges a suspect will face depend on the seriousness of the injury. There are two types of injury associated with a DUI in Utah: bodily injury and serious bodily injury.
According to state law, serious bodily injury is defined as an injury that causes or creates a substantial risk of death, impairment of a bodily function or organ, or serious permanent disfigurement. Any else is considered a bodily injury.
If your DUI arrest involved an accident that resulted in bodily injury, a first DUI offense can be charged as a Class A misdemeanor. However, if your DUI arrest involved a serious bodily injury, a first offense can be charged as a third-degree felony, which can lead to a maximum five-year prison sentence and a fine of up to $5,000 (not including court costs) upon conviction.
DUI Involving Death
Also known as "automobile homicide," a DUI suspect could be charged with this type of crime due to causing the death of someone else while driving a vehicle in a negligent manner and the motorist cannot safely drive because of being under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of both. Additionally, a person can be charged with automobile homicide for causing the death of someone else while driving while using a cell phone or other device.
If your DUI arrest involved an accident that caused the death of another individual, a first DUI offense can be charged as a second-degree felony, punishable by a prison sentence of up to 15 years and a maximum $10,000 fine (not including court costs) upon conviction.
Accused of DUI in Utah? Let Our Salt Lake City Legal Team Protect Your Rights
If you have been arrested for a DUI involving another person’s injury or death in Salt Lake City, an arrest doesn’t mean you are automatically guilty. You still have an opportunity to defend yourself against harsh criminal penalties.
At Lokken & Putnam, P.C., we understand that there is more than one side to every story. In many cases, more than one person shares the blame for a collision, which is why it is imperative to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to fight for you.
Our legal team can investigate the accident, gather and assess evidence at the scene, determine who is at fault, and build a strong and effective defense strategy to either get your charges reduced or your entire case dismissed. We are committed to providing knowledgeable and personalized legal solutions from start to finish in order to get your life back on the right path.
Contact us at (801) 829-9783 to let us get started on your defense today. We serve clients in Salt Lake City, Cottonwood Heights, and throughout Utah.